Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon: Episode 20 – “The Hidden Village for Half Demons”

Finally, we get some backstory for Setsuna and fills in the gap for what happened to her after being separated from Towa in the forest fire. Really, the only thing we didn’t see here was her encounter with the Dream Butterfly. Perhaps we’ll learn more about this in a later episode?

Towa tags along with Setsuna on a trip she takes to what seems to be a remote area in the mountains. When Towa starts asking questions, Setsuna relays her backstory. This, of course, is accompanied by flashbacks to when Setsuna was younger. Little Setsuna was just too adorable!

After the fire, we see Setsuna being rescued by Jaken. Although Setsuna doesn’t recognize him by face, her narration seems to indicate that his voice sounded familiar to her. Jaken drops her off at a remote place in the mountains, which turns out to be a village for half-demons that’s protected by a barrier. The one casting the barrier is a half-demon named Shiori. Viewers who have seen Inuyasha should recognize Shiori as the little half-demon girl that Inuyasha and the others rescued after she was kidnapped by her bat demon grandfather. I loved seeing how Shiori had grown up since I last saw her in Inuyasha, and that she was instrumental in helping Setsuna. What a great throwback for Inuyasha fans!

While she lives there, Setsuna receives a gift of a knife and messages giving her clues on her to use this knife. I’m sure that Jaken secretly delivered them, but to me, there’s a question of who actually sent them. Did Sesshomaru send them and use Jaken as a messenger, or was it Jaken himself? Up to this point, Jaken has been depicted as caring more about the twins than Sesshomaru. If you look back at Episode 18, “Sesshomaru and Kirinmaru,” it’s Jaken who brings up trying to help the girls after they collapse. Sesshomaru seems to shrug off his suggestion, although you can see how earnest Jaken was about it. If you had told me back when I was first introduced to Jaken in Inuyasha he would become a likable character, I would have laughed. Yes, we did see a little bit of this with Rin, but there was still some rough patches in how he treated her. But his concern for the twins is genuine.

When Setsuna is around 10, she is summoned to live in the village where she was born. We’ve seen part of her return to the village in a previous flashback, but this expounds on what happened. Unfortunately, Setsuna’s upbringing in the half-demon village makes it where she just can’t quite fit in with the humans. Kaede tries to work with Setsuna, but in the end, Setsuna decides to return to the half-demon village.

One day, when an eclipse hits and Shiori loses her demon power, the half-demon village is attacked by a group of demons wanting to eat the half-demons. Miroku is nearby and discovers what they’re planning, so he follows them. Setsuna’s demon powers are stirred, and she is unable to keep them under control. While she’s able to defeat the demons, she’s about to attack Shiori and the others when Miroku intervenes. The weapon we see Setsuna wielding actually belonged to one of the demons she defeated, and Miroku uses this as a medium to place a seal on Setsuna’s demon powers.

After this, Shiori tells Setsuna that she is strong enough to survive on her own and no longer has a need to live in the half-demon village. This is when she returns to the village and is invited to join the demon slayers. And this is where her backstory ends.

While in some respects this could be seen as an info dump, I was glad to finally get a lot of Setsuna’s backstory. To be honest, this is probably the best episode I’ve seen since Episode 15, “Farewell Under the Lunar Eclipse.” This was definitely a step up from the previous three episodes. And from the preview, it looks like next week’s episode is finally going to give the audience the history of the rainbow pearls. While I’m glad to finally be getting some more of this information, it’s still a little frustrating that it’s coming so close to the end of the series.

Additional episodes about Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon:

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